A Kiambu resident has petitioned the High Court to quash a section of the County Governments Act that denies a deputy governor powers to nominate or dismiss officials in the absence of the governor.
In the petition, James Gacheru wants the Attorney General to advice the relevant government agencies to repeal Section 32 (4) of the County Governments Act no 17 of 2012, after the court declares the law as unconstitutional.
Mr Gacheru argued that the said section is inconsistent with the provisions of Article 179 (5) of the Constitution of Kenya to the extent that it uses the phrase “shall not” exercise any powers of the governor to nominate, appoint or dismiss.
He argues that any act or omission in contravention of Article 179 (5) of the Constitution is invalid.
Section 32 (4) of the County Governments Act prohibits a deputy governor from nominating, appointing or dismissing county officials.
The Employment and Labour Relations Court has already stopped Kiambu Deputy Governor James Nyoro from reshuffling the Cabinet or any other chief officers, pending a case to be heard on October 8.
In the petition, Mr Gacheru said that it is not tenable for a deputy governor, in the absence of the governor, to be accountable for the management of county human resources without all the powers necessary to enable him or her ensure accountability.
He said the powers necessary for the deputy governor to be accountable for the management of county resources includes the power to appoint, nominate or dismiss.
The courts barred Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu from accessing his office after he was charged with corruption.
Mr Waititu moved to the Court of Appeal seeking to overturn the decision.
Mr Gacheru now says in absence of the governor, it is impossible, for the deputy county boss to be accountable.
“Section 32 (4) of the County Governments Act No 17 of 2012 offends the general principles of construction, application and interpretation of written law and specifically offends the provisions of Section 48 of the Interpretations and General Provisions Act Cap 2 Laws of Kenya,” his petition reads.